What is Intermittent Fasting Really?
Its principle is to eat healthy only after all food are properly digested and the stomach is ready to work again. With no food (thus less blood sugar), body doesn’t have to release insulin trying the balance blood sugar level. Insulin is a hormone that converts excess sugar into fat and stores them in our body.
There are several types but the most popular are 16:8 and 5:2. For 16:8, you don’t eat for 16 hours (say, from 8pm – 12pm next day). For 5:2, you eat normal for 5 days in a week and fast for 2 days limiting calories to 500-600 per day.
Our bodies store excess calories intake and store them as body fat so that it could use as fuel when there is no food available. Its key point is preventing insulin from be released in the body. When you do intermittent fasting, insulin level drops in the body and stored fat begins to be burnt off. Be careful though. If you intake anything sweet during the fasting period, insulin gets activated and starts to store fat again.
Below are examples of food with different Glycemic Index (relative rise in the blood glucose)
Low GI: banana, cabbage, peanuts, apple, tomato, milk
Med GI: barley, pasta, sweet potato, ice cream
High GI: white rice, donuts, cake, ice cream, cookies, potato, corn
Now you see what food you should avoid late at night.
Fasting induces changes in hormonal activities in your body. It decreases insulin level in the body. But it also increases the release of noradrenaline, a fat-burning hormone.
When you fast, human growth hormone (HGH) level shoots up, increasing like 5 times. This is beneficial for fat loss and muscle gain for instance.
Another benefit is fasting facilitates cell repair. Cells initiate repair processes when fasting thru Autophagy. Autophagy means cells digest themselves take out trash basically like old and dysfunctional protein build up inside cells.
* Caution: if you have medical conditions like diabetes, anemia, etc., please consult your doctor before you begin fasting.
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